Magnolia (1999) Movie Review: A Masterful Film by Paul Thomas Anderson


Paul Thomas Anderson’s films are recognized for his encyclopedic knowledge of film technique and his projects that deal with a large number of roles that don’t necessarily have to be connected. Anderson shows the barriers of big cities as the habitat of dissatisfied, frustrated small townspeople who try in every way to assimilate into the environment. Anderson’s qualities are confirmed by the fact that he has received five Oscar nominations by the age of 40.

Magnolia (1999) Movie ReviewRelease date: December 8, 1999 (USA)

Director: Paul Thomas Anderson

Narrator: Ricky Jay

Genre: Drama, Thriller

Budget: 37 million USD

Box office: 48.5 million USD

The film “Magnolia” takes place in the San Fernando suburb, and the main actors are unconsciously connected through a quiz in which children compete against adults. All events take place in one day. The plot consists of a series of seemingly unrelated stories, and each story focuses on showing the fragility of human beings when meeting natural forces and adapting to coincidences that affect their lives. The film was shot in recognizable Scorsese shots, where there is no “cut,” and the whole movie is accompanied by a great soundtrack.

The actors in “Magnolia” represent the highlight of the film. Anderson is known for bringing together actors, mostly episodic actors, who have acted in his earlier films. Among the cast are Tom Cruise in the role of a charismatic guru, John C. Reilly, Julianne Moore, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. The casting was done perfectly, and each actor gave their maximum performance.

The film’s ending divided critics, with some individuals believing that such a confusing outcome is the product of a failed attempt to end the story with a sufficiently effective epilogue. On the other hand, some find the film pretentious and without real meaning. Regardless, the reviewer recommends the film to watch and suggests approaching it with an open mind.

To support the arguments, the reviewer highlights the fact that Anderson has received five Oscar nominations by the age of 40, showing his qualities as a filmmaker. Additionally, the reviewer notes the excellent casting of the film, including the standout performances of Tom Cruise, John C. Reilly, Julianne Moore, and Philip Seymour Hoffman. Finally, the reviewer acknowledges the differing opinions on the film’s ending, with some finding it confusing and others finding it pretentious.